New forensics research center expected to boost local economy

Officials are expected to gather together this week to hold a groundbreaking ceremony for the K9 Tactical Center/Forensic Institute for Research, Security and Tactics in Land O’ Lakes. Pasco Sheriff Chris Nocco is predicting that beyond its other benefits, the new forensics center also will be an economic driver — having wide-ranging impacts on the county as whole, and Land O’ Lakes, in … [Read more...]

Pasco County property tax rate won’t change

Pasco County property owners will pay the same tax rate as they did last year, but their property bill could rise, if the value of their property has increased. The Pasco County Commission had its first public hearing on the county’s budget for fiscal year 2019 on Sept. 4. The board’s final budget hearing is set for Sept. 17 at 6:30 p.m., at the West Pasco Government Center Board Room, 8731 … [Read more...]

Citizens’ survey offers praise, concerns

About 60 percent of residents who responded to an annual National Citizens Survey rated Pasco County’s quality of life as good. Similarly, residents gave good marks to the overall quality of county services and customer services. But, the survey results weren’t entirely rosy. The growth in housing is happening faster than infrastructure, including roads and schools, according to residents … [Read more...]

‘Bots’ help fight sex crimes

The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office is using a new cyber sting program to combat human sex trafficking. The agency has joined forces with the Tampa-based U.S. Institute Against Human Trafficking (USIAHT), to use an approach that attacks the demand-side of sex trafficking by targeting and identifying online sex buyers through the use of intercept bots. Here’s how it works: The bots are used … [Read more...]

Pasco tax revenues are up this year

Rising property values in Pasco County could provide about $11 million in increased revenues. That’s a bigger windfall than the $10.5 million initially projected. That extra cash – about $650,000 - would play a key role in helping to close a $3.3 million gap in funding requests for 2019 from the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office. Pasco County expected to receive final revenue data by July 1 … [Read more...]

Deadline approaching for county budget

Crunch time is approaching for Pasco County’s 2019 budget. On June 5, Pasco County commissioners got a look at a draft budget as part of their review process. Crucial dates are coming up, including a July 10 deadline to set the millage rate, which determines how much homeowners will pay in taxes. No increase in millage is expected. However, some will pay higher tax bills because of … [Read more...]

Budget talks look at next two years

As the Pasco County Commission contemplates the county’s budget for fiscal year 2019, it’s also thinking about the budget for 2020. Commissioners are looking ahead, because they know that a referendum on the November ballot could have a sizable impact on the county’s budget. Voters will decide on Nov. 8 whether to expand homestead exemptions by $25,000. If the referendum passes, Pasco County … [Read more...]

Political Agenda 4/18/2018

Zephyrhills City Council election results The results are in from the April 10 election for seats on the Zephyrhills City Council. Jodi Wilkeson has been elected to the District 3 seat, and Charles E. Proctor has been re-elected to the District 5 seat. Wilson received 553 votes, which represented 45.89 percent of the vote in the District 3 election. Cory Paul Sommers came in second, with … [Read more...]

Sheriff’s Office adds policing advisor

The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office is taking a closer look at its policing practices, as a measure to maintain transparency and openness in dealing with citizens. To do so, the agency has appointed general counsel Lindsay Moore as its first constitutional policing advisor. As part of her new role, Moore’s primary duties are to to ensure the agency follows best practices and procedures in the … [Read more...]

Pasco Sheriff’s Office unveils app to help stress

Pasco Sgt. Matt Rosenbloom has handled countless distressing calls throughout his 12 years in law enforcement. “I’ve seen things that people shouldn’t see out there,” he said. Sometimes it takes several days for him to get past a particular incident. Witnessing the death of a child, for instance, takes a heavy toll. It’s something many deputies aren’t mentally prepared for … [Read more...]